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The Fourth Wednesday of Great Lent: Ten Suggestions for Lent

By His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Geron of America Meditate on the History of Salvation Think of the Lenten period as a time of meditating on the history of salvation.  Think about the creation of the universe and of Adam and Eve as the beginning of human life on earth.  Think about the fall of Adam and the entrance of sin in humanity.  We see in the hymnology of the liturgical book of Lent, the Triodion,

The Fourth Tuesday of Great Lent. The Lenten Struggle. Putting Off the Old Self.

The Lenten Struggle Lent is the perfect time to struggle with the ego By Abbot Tryphon, March 26, 2019 Modern psychology has told us we must feel good about ourselves and instructed us to reject the idea of guilt and sin. Sin is seen as religion’s instrument for keeping people in line, making them dependent on an institution that should be relegated to the Dark Ages. In an age where man is elevated to being

The Soul’s Objective Union with God

The Genesis story of the Judeo-Christian tradition is really quite extraordinary. It says that we were created in the very “image and likeness” of God, proceeding from free and overflowing love (Genesis 1:26). This flow is rediscovered and re-experienced by various imperfect people throughout the Jewish and Christian Scriptures. This sets us on a positive and hopeful foundation, which cannot be overstated. The Bible illustrates, through various stories, humanity’s objective unity with God, the total gratuity

Bashing Heads

Troublesome passages of the Old Testament By Abbot Tryphon, November 17, 2019  It is important when reading the Old Testament, to remember that it was written as an account of a peoples’ journey to God. As the Israelites journey continued, they came to know God, little by little, through God’s self-revelation to their prophets, and their understanding of God expanded. Christ, as the Logos (the Word of God), was from the very beginning, and identified

A Gifted Existence

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, October 14, 2015 You cannot give thanks for what has not been given to you. This simple maxim goes to the heart of the Christian life. If I steal your money and burn down your house, I cannot offer thanks for what I have done. It was not given to me from God. Anything that is not a gift has the nature of sin. I can give thanks to God that

A Light Thing

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 26, 2015  And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. (Joh 3:19) I have a vivid memory within my childhood of a serious sin. I was probably around seven or eight and an object had captured both my eye and my young heart: a baseball glove. Its cost was probably less than ten

The Day the Earth Stood Still

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 12, 2011 Orthodox Christians (New Calendar) are currently observing a two-week fast in preparation for the Feast of the Dormition, a day which marks the death (“falling asleep”) of the Mother of God. For those for whom such feasts are foreign, it is easy to misunderstand what the Orthodox are about – and to assume that this is simply a feast to Mary because we like that sort of thing.

A Matter of Life and Death

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 5, 2015  There are very few categories more basic than life and death. For Classical Christian thinking, they are essential. There has also been a tendency in both theology and philosophy, however, to move away from these fundamental categories and become lost in the complexities of other language. Thinking about the moral life is a prime example. A word like “sin” becomes an obscure subset of legal wrangling and tortured

Churchly Humility

By Fr. Stephen Freeman, August 3, 2015  There are many Orthodox bumper stickers and internet memes that seek to portray the excellence of Orthodoxy. Some compare us to the “marines,” others to various kinds of extreme sports. There’s the one that declares the Orthodox Church to have been founded in 33 A.D. I understand such boosterism in a culture where proclaiming the excellence of your football team or other product loyalty is seen as important.

Fifth Monday of Pascha. Being Saved—The Ontological Approach

By Father Stephen Freeman, May 24, 2019 I cannot begin to count the number of times I wished there were a simple, felicitous word for “ontological.” I dislike writing theology with words that have to be explained – that is, words whose meanings are not immediately obvious. But, alas, I have found no substitute and will, therefore, beg my reader’s indulgence for dragging such a word into our conversations. From the earliest times in the